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5×5 Indy Winner Kris Owens Project Update

Posted by: 5x5 Indy
Posted: August 5, 2015
Categories: 5x5 Indy

Launched in 2013, 5×5 Indy creates a space to for people in Indianapolis to share and support arts based ideas for community projects. Each 5×5 event showcases five ideas and awards one with $10k.

We thought it’d be fun to catch up with our winners to see what happened with their project and what they’re up to now. Today we’re talking with Kris Owens who won at a 5×5 hosted by the Harrison Center for the Arts in 2014.

Kris_Owens_5x5First things first, give us the 20 second version of your 5×5 proposal.

My project was titled “Overwhelming Underpass.” It calls for improving the underpass on Alabama Street between 11th and 12th Streets. That includes landscaping, litter pickup, art and improved lighting.

Got it! So, how’d the project turn out for you?

Currently we are working with Shawn Causey. She’s a (great!) local artist who not only painted the columns there, but is also working on a light installation.

The project has changed since the initial presentation. It has been scaled back a bit. Lighting became the priority, and that’s expensive and time consuming and requires a some lessons in red tape. Therefore, completing the project has been a little challenging.


I hope to still accomplish some items the community corps discussed such as PUP seats, a trash can at the stop, and a little free library. So, while it has taken longer than I had hoped, I think we’re doing it the right way.

What sticks out for you the most about your experience with 5×5?

The experience was great, and I enjoyed meeting the other finalists and getting a chance to speak about what is important in my neighborhood. I have always been engaged in the community, and have kind of taken beautification on as my niche in the neighborhood.

I think art in Indy is great, as long as it means something to its residents and even more so if installations come out of a grassroots kind if effort to improve the community.

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